Group B Streptococcus vaccine development: Present status and future considerations, with emphasis on perspectives for low and middle income countries

Miwako Kobayashi, Johan Vekemans, Carol J. Baker, Adam J. Ratner, Kirsty Le Doare, Stephanie J. Schrag

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

45 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Globally, group B Streptococcus (GBS) remains the leading cause of sepsis and meningitis in young infants, with its greatest burden in the first 90 days of life. Intrapartum antibiotic prophylaxis (IAP) for women at risk of transmitting GBS to their newborns has been effective in reducing, but not eliminating, the young infant GBS disease burden in many high income countries. However, identification of women at risk and administration of IAP is very difficult in many low and middle income country (LMIC) settings, and is not possible for home deliveries. Immunization of pregnant women with a GBS vaccine represents an alternate pathway to protecting newborns from GBS disease, through the transplacental antibody transfer to the fetus in utero. This approach to prevent GBS disease in young infants is currently under development, and is approaching late stage clinical evaluation. This manuscript includes a review of the natural history of the disease, global disease burden estimates, diagnosis and existing control options in different settings, the biological rationale for a vaccine including previous supportive studies, analysis of current candidates in development, possible correlates of protection and current status of immunogenicity assays. Future potential vaccine development pathways to licensure and use in LMICs, trial design and implementation options are discussed, with the objective to provide a basis for reflection, rather than recommendations.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2355
JournalF1000Research
Volume5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2016
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Group B Streptococcus
  • Low-and middle-income countries
  • Maternal vaccination
  • Neonatal sepsis
  • Phase III trial
  • Vaccine development

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